The Gardens by the Bay, the Sky Dome and the Flower Dome are really well known Singaporean attractions for a good reason, they are absolutely gorgeous. You can stroll around for hours. To make the best of it, I would bring a good book and a picnic and just relax there. Could be a good place to go the day after landing from a long flight for example.
Also, there seem to be special exhibitions and events regularly at the Gardens by the Bay. I would recommend checking the schedule on their website here, as you might even be able to catch a special performance.
Most travelers will go see the air walk connecting the giant rainforest “sculptures” covered in rainforest plants of the Gardens before heading on to the Domes. There is no problem doing that, but let’s not forget that there is much more to the Gardens than the giant “trees”. You can walk along the water in the direction opposite to the Domes and there, unexpectedly, you will see amazing sculptures. Some people can stay at beaches for whole days, if you are a garden type of person, you could probably do the same here.
From the Gardens, you can head on to the domes simply by following the path signs. I was told to do the Flower Dome first, but to be honest I don’t know if it was merely a matter of population control, because I am under the impression that doing it in a particular order doesn’t really enhance your experience.
The Flower Dome is consistent with very organized manners of Singaporeans, with very distinct gardens labelled in a way that leaves no room for confusion. There was a “Mediterranean Garden” and a “Californian Garden”, among others, but there was no “Canadian Garden” much to my dismay. If I had to create a Canadian Garden for the Flower Dome, I would go all in layers, with portions more elevated then others. I would have a small waterfall, a pond and some ornamental stones. It would probably have some ornamental evergreen, irises, lilies, hyacinths, lavender, crocus and some herbs such as rosemary and basil. If I had to add trees, I would probably go for some sort of fruit tree (most likely an apple tree) as well as a lilac tree. Then again, maybe none of the plants I have named are endemic to Canada… Gardening is not really my strong point.
A special exhibition on roses was being held when I was there. It displayed numerous types of roses and went into their symbolism and their uses through times going back thousands of years. I had never really taken the time to reflect on this before, but roses have been used for a long time and throughout many cultures.
The Cloud Dome puts a lot of emphasis on the issues our planet, especially its rainforests, is facing today. Your walk takes you inside this tower covered with waterfalls and rainforests plants until you get to a room displaying facts and previsions about climate changes. You can imagine the message is rather grim and I do agree we can’t ignore the problem any longer – we must reduce our footprint. However, I think it would have been better to finish the exhibition with concrete suggestions of measures people can implement in their everyday lives.
(One last look at the “trees”)
You will be able to have a look inside the domes and at the sculptures up stream in my next post. For now though, my question to you: what would you put in a Canadian Garden?
You can get to the Gardens by getting off at Bayfront MRT Station and using Exit B.